Boise State Alters Policies to Allow Funds for Religious Groups

August 11, 2009

Religiously affiliated groups will now be able to seek student fee money at Boise State University, under an agreement struck with students who sued the institution. The accord was announced by the Alliance Defense Fund, which (along with the Christian Legal Society) sued Boise State last winter on behalf of six students who alleged that they had been denied funds for Christian groups with which they were affiliated, even though money was provided to atheist groups. Boise State officials cited state law as precluding them from awarding funds to religious groups, but a spokesman said the university was now "taking a wider view in our own procedures and identifying all our 200+ clubs equally as student organizations." Under the agreement, according to the Alliance Defense Fund, Boise State rewrote its rules "to provide protection for all student groups against viewpoint discrimination" and "amended its policies to clarify that its nondiscrimination policies would not be applied to prevent student groups, including religious student groups, from limiting their leadership to those who share the groups’ beliefs and conduct themselves consistently with those beliefs."

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